Friday, February 12, 2016

Syria Ceasefire Deal in Munich? Hold the Cheers

Syria Ceasefire Deal in Munich? Hold the Cheers

by Stephen Lendman

How can fighting cease when Washington wants it continued, when it deplores peace and wants war, when it continues supporting ISIS and other terrorist groups using them as imperial foot soldiers, when key NATO and regional allies want fighting continued until sovereign Syria is destroyed?

Throughout nearly five years of Obama’s war (it’s not civil and calling it that is part of the grand deception), US determination to transform Syria into another US vassal state remains unchanged - naked aggression the strategy to achieve it.

Obama didn’t launch war in March 2011 to quit. Previous diplomatic efforts to resolve things failed. Nothing suggests this time is different. It’s not.

Don’t be fooled by John Kerry, a notorious serial liar, saying International Syrian Support Group (ISSG) members “agreed to implement a nationwide cessation of hostilities to begin in a target of one week’s time (to) apply to all parties (except) Daesh and al-Nusra and any other terrorist organization designated by the Security Council.”

No agreement among negotiating parties distinguishes between terrorists and other opposition organizations for good reason.

All so-called “rebel” groups in Syria are US-created terrorist ones. Russia is committed to defeating them. So is Assad - the only possible way to end fighting and liberate Syria.

Moscow is still waiting for Washington to respond to its ceasefire proposal submitted days earlier.

Western-appointed UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura said no agreement was reached in Munich on which groups are terrorist organizations, except for ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra.

“This issue needs longer discussion,” he said. “It won’t be done today,” adding ISSG members didn’t agree on a ceasefire until now.

Agreements are one thing, reality on the ground another. Conflict continues raging with no end in sight.

On Wednesday, Syria’s UN envoy Bashar al Jaafari minced no words blaming America, Britain, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar for Geneva III’s failure - “because these countries (don’t) respect the procedures that were agreed on in accordance with” Security Council Res. 2254, he explained.

They undermined talks, assuring they were dead on arrival. Munich discussions changed nothing. A photo-op after they ended showing a frowning Sergey Lavrov, indicating his displeasure.

He explained Russia’s anti-terrorist aerial campaign will continue. The devil is in the details on what was agreed on yesterday, a framework for further discussions. 

What’s most important remains unresolved. Given Washington’s uncompromising regional imperial agenda, chances of achieving a durable ceasefire and resolving Syria’s conflict diplomatically are virtually nil.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

US Demand Halt to Russia's Real War on Terrorism

US Demands Halt to Russia’s Real War on Terrorism

by Stephen Lendman

It doesn’t surprise. Longstanding US hypocrisy and double standards are notorious. Do as we say, not as we do is official policy. 

Rogue states operate this way. Washington rules override all others, notably international, constitutional and US statute laws. Democracy is pure fantasy. None whatever exists. 

Elections are farcical when held, the political process too corrupted to fix. Money-controlled duopoly power runs things. Neocon fascist lunatics make or influence policy.

America is by far the most ruthless and dangerous regime in world history. Its unrelenting imperial agenda risks global war.

Syria is Obama’s war, naked aggression by any standard, using ISIS and other terrorist groups as imperial foot soldiers, aided by US bombing infrastructure and government sites, pretending to be waging war on terrorism.

Washington manufactured and supports it, a key part of its evil agenda. Russia alone among world powers is waging real war on terrorism. Putin deserves universal praise and support.

Instead, US-led Western officials, rogue Arab ones, and the go-along media echo chamber demand Russia stop its vital anti-terrorism campaign.

John Kerry lost credibility long ago, substituting Big Lies for hard truths. He irresponsibly accused Russia of killing Syrian civilians in large numbers, including women and children - never providing evidence when making these reckless accusations.

There is none, plenty showing all US imperial wars harm civilians most. Millions of corpses attest to America’s barbarity - from exterminating its native people to raping one country after another, notably post-9/11.

Russia “has to stop” its Syrian aerial campaign, Kerry blustered. White House press secretary Josh Earnest added “(t)here is no denying that the efforts of the Russian military to buck up and strengthen the Assad regime's grip on power only gives the Assad regime less of an incentive to come to the negotiating table and act constructively in conversations there.”

Various US and other Western officials shamelessly blame Russia for Geneva III’s collapse, a sham dead-on-arrival process. Negotiating with terrorists assures failure.

Russia’s aerial campaign continues with devastating effectiveness, why Washington and its rogue partners are in such an uproar, wanting it halted, making outrageous accusations.

Moscow uses “dumb bombs,” not precision ones, Kerry blustered, especially in the crucial battle for Aleppo. Hard facts prove otherwise.

Russia bashing continues for a purpose. Its effective Syria campaign threatens America’s regional imperial agenda - wanting all independent governments replaced by US-controlled puppet ones, ousting Assad crucial to isolating Iran, then targeting its government for regime change.

Putin intervened in Syria to defeat ISIS and other terrorist groups, reducing them in size and strength to a shadow of their peak strength, rendering them ineffective, deterring their spread to Central Asia and Russia - at the same time, directly challenging Washington’s imperial agenda, its key objective to achieve regime change in Russia and China.

Washington orchestrated farcical peace talks. It called for a ceasefire while its own military operations continue, especially ongoing support for ISIS and other terrorist groups.

Its aim to give their battered forces breathing space, letting them rearm, regroup and resume their offensive, possible only if Russia halts its effective aerial campaign, giving Syrian forces the upper hand, letting them advance and retake earlier lost territory.

Putin has no intention of losing the strategic advantage gained, vital in waging real war on terror, polar opposite Washington’s phony one.

Russian UN envoy Vitaly Churkin said Moscow’s aerial campaign will continue. It won’t “unilaterally” stop, explaining:

“(W)hat about the terrorist and opposition groups. Are they going to stop too? What about this American-led coalition? Are they going to stop too?” 

He blamed US-led Western nations for opposition terrorist delegates walking out in Geneva, arriving with no intention to negotiate, making one-sided demands alone, impossible to accept.

Churkin diplomatically accused Washington and its so-called coalition partners of having no “grounds” to accuse Russia, moral or formal.

They continue “rejecting our…offers…to arrange really practical cooperation between us and them in (trying to resolve) the situation (in) Syria,” he explained.

Washington’s imperial agenda is lawless. Endless regional violence, chaos, and devastation continues. Russia’s campaign is “fully legitimate,” begun after Assad’s “invitation,” Churkin stressed.

Nothing in prospect suggests conflict resolution any time soon. As long as Washington and its rogue allies support ISIS and other terrorist groups, it’ll continue endlessly.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Republicans Tried Delaying Release of Iranian Held US Spies Until After Presidential Election


Republicans Tried Delaying Release of Iranian Held US Spies Until After Presidential Election

by Stephen Lendman

Shades of the 1979-1980 Iran hostage crisis. Clear evidence was later revealed when it was too late to matter.

It showed Reagan/GHW Bush officials arranged a secret deal with Tehran, the so-called October Surprise, delaying the release of 52 Americans held for 444 days until after the 1980 presidential election - to give Reagan a boost over Carter. Iran got weapons for cooperating.

US media propaganda at the time was deplorable. Washington’s Tehran embassy was a notorious den of spies. Carter disgracefully called its personnel “victims of terrorism and anarchy.”

Iranian students involved were calm, orderly, well-behaved responsible youths. Portraying them otherwise to this day (including in the deplorable Hollywood propaganda film Argo) reflects longstanding US Islamophobia, notably against Iran since its 1979 revolution, ousting a US-installed despot.

In July 2014, Iranian authorities detained Washington Post correspondent Jason Rezaian on charges of spying. At the same time, three other US journalists (including Rezaian’s wife) were arrested.

In mid-January, Iran freed them as part of prisoner swap (along with a detained US student released separately) - Washington freeing seven Iranian-Americans in return, held on fabricated sanctions-related charges.

Tehran’s Foreign Ministry indicated US charges against 14 other detained Iranians were dropped.

On February 11, Fars News quoted Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Secretary Ali Shamkhani, saying “US Republicans sent a message to Tehran, demanding us not to release the American spies until” after America’s November presidential election.

“During the prisoner swap talks, we showed that we will never be affected by domestic or foreign pressures,” Shamkhani explained. 

“The decision to release the American prisoners was made on humanitarian grounds and after being approached by their families. Ultimately, the decision was made based on our national security interests as well as the fact that our own people were being held in US prisons.”

Longstanding US policy toward remains hostile. The nuclear deal changed nothing. Washington wants sovereign Iranian independence replaced by pro-Western puppet governance.

Naked aggression could be launched any time for any contrived reason to trying achieving America’s long-sought aim, its usual hegemonic strategy of choice.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

International Syrian Support Group Meets in Munich

International Syrian Support Group Meets in Munich

by Stephen Lendman

Representatives (mostly at the foreign ministerial level) from 17 member countries, the UN, EU and Arab League are meeting in Munich as this is written. 

They’re discussing efforts to resolve Syria’s conflict - Obama’s war, not a civil one as widely misreported, Western propaganda, blaming victims for US-led imperial high crimes.

Chances for progress are virtually nil because Washington wants war, not peace, wanting Western-controlled puppet governance replacing Syrian sovereign independence.

Russian UN envoy Vitaly Churkin explained Russia will present ideas toward achieving a ceasefire and addressing humanitarian issues, details to be explained later after discussions take place and Washington responds to Moscow’s proposal.

Russia intervened in Syria after its government requested help. Its operations fully comply with fundamental international law principles.

“We are not going to find excuses for our actions,” Churkin stressed. “We are acting very openly” on solid legal ground. “Our Defense Ministry holds daily briefings” on ongoing operations, explaining them candidly.

On Thursday, Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said Russia has no intention to change its Syrian strategy. It’s committed to continue real war on terrorism, polar opposite America’s phony one.

“We have lately heard advice from the Pentagon on the necessity to change our strategy in Syria to ‘help’ the United States attain political transition of power there,” Konashenkov noted. 

“We will remind especially for such advisors that the aim of our operation in Syria is to destroy terrorism - a direct and clear threat to security of our country and the world.”

The campaign will continue until mission accomplished. Political issues should be resolved by Syrians alone, “not in tranches, but at the negotiating table,” free from foreign interference, Washington’s longstanding way of operating.

“We never had and never will have any other strategies,” konashenkov stressed.

“We have clearly seen over the last five years the (disastrous) results of Washington’s strategies of ‘political transitions’ in the Middle East near Russian borders.” 

“Instead of ‘triumph of democracy’, there is devastation, blood, refugees everywhere. Is this why foreign strategists are now talking about the necessity of launching ground operations in Syria and Libya? Maybe these advisors should stop making the same mistakes over again.”

America’s regional aim involves smashing all independent countries, establishing dominion over them, leaving a devastating trail of mass slaughter and destruction, civilians harmed most.

Russia is committed to working forthrightly for world peace and stability, resolving conflicts diplomatically, supporting mutual cooperation among all nations, according to principles of international law.

Which agenda do you support? Which one deserves high praise? Which other one utter condemnation?

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Well-Documented Close Turkish/ISIS Ties

Well-Documented Close Turkish/ISIS Ties

by Stephen Lendman

Western media scoundrels suppress information on America’s responsibility for creating ISIS and likeminded terrorist groups, using them to further its imperial agenda, involving endless wars of aggression.

Turkey is criminally complicit, Erdogan allied with Washington’s imperial project, giving safe haven status to ISIS and other terrorists on its territory, arming them, letting them pass freely cross-border into Syria and Iraq.

One rogue state supports another, both responsible for high crimes against peace.

On Wednesday, Sergey Lavrov minced no words, saying clear intelligence-gotten evidence shows ISIS terrorists maintain constant contacts with Turkish officials, planning new tactics in waging war on Syria.

Russian airstrikes severely disrupted “traditional smuggling routes,” he explained. Moscow’s control of Syrian airspace prevents Ankara’s earlier aim to establish a no-fly zone.

It maintains the objective of wanting a safe zone created on Syrian territory, aiming to annex it on the phony pretext of having it “ISIS-free,” a thinly veiled scheme fooling no one.

Any attempt to follow-through on its plan “would be a violation of international law and also escalate tensions substantially and fundamentally,” Lavrov stressed.

It’s illegally constructing tent camps and “engineering structures” around 200 meters inside Syrian territory, a deliberate provocation, pursued with US permission or complicity.

Lavrov doesn’t envision anything more than “small provocations,” perhaps intended to goad Russia and/or Syria to respond militarily, risking escalated conflict.

He doesn’t rule out the possibility of regional Gulf States deploying troops to Syria, saying:

If peace talks “bring no fruit or are not allowed to begin, then it is possible that some countries, directed by personal hatred toward Assad, would go for a head-on solution by force,” allying with US-dominated NATO aggression.

“The Turks say openly that Russian air power “bl(ew) their plans (for Syria) wide open…”

Lavrov is a consummate diplomat, working tirelessly, trying to restore peace and stability to a troubled region - maintaining optimism, despite knowing Washington plans endless wars to achieve its imperial objectives.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Is US-Dominated NATO Planning War on Russia?

Is US-Dominated NATO Planning War on Russia?

by Stephen Lendman

Given America’s bipartisan criminal class, the unthinkable is possible - the madness of launching catastrophic nuclear war, a strategy only lunatics would support.

When NATO defense ministers meet, America’s imperial agenda dominates discussions, other alliance members pressured to go along, even when harming their national interests.

After meeting in Brussels on Wednesday, US-appointed NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said they “agreed on an enhanced (multinational) forward presence in the eastern part of our alliance…to make clear that an attack against one ally is attack against all allies, and that the alliance as a whole will respond.”

Fact: US and other NATO members face no threats, imminent or otherwise - especially from Russia, Putin the preeminent world peacemaker.

Fact: NATO’s only threat is internal, member states going along with US imperial policy, raping one nonbelligerent country after another, risking direct confrontation with Russia.

NATO forces plan rotational deployments close to Russia’s borders, the same scheme begun months earlier, escalating it to a more provocative level.

Russia protested the move to no avail, blasting what it called “the false pretext of (nonexistent) ‘aggressive behavior’ by our country.” 

Is Washington daring Putin to respond militarily? He’s obliged to protect Russian national security, at the same time intending no foolish actions. 

His longstanding policy pursues peace and stability, going all-out to avoid greater war, wanting ongoing conflicts resolved diplomatically.

Provocative US-led actions based on a nonexistent Russian threat coincide with Pentagon commanders lobbying Congress for increased military spending, along with pressuring other NATO members to increase their own.

All this at a time when invented threats alone exist, when Washington is hellbent for endless war - Russia and China perhaps its ultimate targets.

Imagine if adversarial foreign forces deployed along America’s northern and/or southern borders, if their warships patrolled off its Atlantic and Pacific coasts close to its territorial waters.

Full-scale war might follow, Washington claiming a major threat. Russia shows remarkable restraint in the face of US actions perilously close to naked aggression, posing a real threat to its security.

US-dominated NATO’s increased military buildup along its borders risks becoming prelude to direct confrontation, the unthinkable possibility of catastrophic nuclear war.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

How America Manufactures Phony Evidence to Bash Russia

How America Manufactures Phony Evidence to Bash Russia

by Stephen Lendman

US viciousness is unrestrained, a pure evil force threatening world peace. Its imperial agenda gives rogue state terror new meaning, consistently blaming victims for its high crimes, bashing Russia irresponsibly.

Its unrelenting aerial war on terror continues effectively. Washington invents dirty tricks to subvert it, including by manufacturing war crimes in Aleppo - claiming its warplanes bombed two area hospitals when they were no Russian flights in the vicinity.

On Wednesday, Russia’s Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said “at 13:55 Moscow time (10:55 GMT), two American A-10 assault aircraft entered Syrian airspace from Turkey, flew right to the city of Aleppo and bombed targets there” - a mission to blame Russia for its war crimes.

“No Russian warplanes carried out airstrikes in the Aleppo city area yesterday. The nearest target engaged was over 20 kilometers away from the city,” Konashenkov explained, adding:

US warplanes and drones were active over Aleppo on Wednesday. “(W)e did not have enough time to clarify what” targets they bombed. “We will look more carefully” to determine them - for sure ones chosen to accuse Russia of war crimes it didn’t commit.

No evidence indicates any Russian airstrikes on hospitals or other civilian sites throughout its entire Syrian campaign. None!! 

America notoriously considers civilians and non-military-related sites legitimate targets in all its wars.

Last October, it deliberately and unaccountably bombed a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) Kunduz, Afghanistan hospital on the phony pretext of attacking Taliban fighters - killing dozens of medical staff and patients, injuring many more, destroying the only area facility thousands of Afghans relied on for treatment when ill or injured.

America and its rogue allies “make unfounded accusations against us,” Konashenkov explained, irresponsibly blaming Russia for their high crimes.

Chances for restoring peace and stability to Syria any time soon are virtually nil. America’s wants endless war.

Russia’s intervention so far foiled its aim to transform the nation into another US vassal state - part of Washington’s grand plan to redraw the Middle East map, carving up countries for easier control and exploitation.

Defeating America’s war on humanity is the free world’s most urgent task. Survival depends on it.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Deplorable NYT Anti-Syrian Propaganda

Deplorable NYT Anti-Syrian Propaganda

by Stephen Lendman

The so-called newspaper of record makes garden variety yellow journal look good by comparison.

State-sponsored managed news misinformation and Big Lies substitute for what readers need to know and deserve to get.

Borrowing a line from the late Chicago columnist Mike Royko’s criticism of Rupert Murdoch publications, no respectable fish would want to be wrapped in its pages - containing toxic material unfit to read.

Times management, editors, correspondents and contributors march in lockstep with all US imperial wars, turning a blind eye to their horrors, the highest of high crimes against peace.

The Times continues supporting Obama’s naked aggression on Syria since launched in March 2011, using ISIS and other terrorist groups as imperial foot soldiers.

It consistently suppresses hard truths essential to report - relentlessly bashing Assad viciously, an overwhelmingly popular leader, responsibly defending his country from US-supported terrorist invaders.

Calling ongoing conflict “civil” is one of many proliferated Big Lies  - by mainstream and some alternative media sources.

The latest Times propaganda piece complains about how “Russian intervention (its real war on terror unlike America’s phony one it didn’t explain) sharply reduced US options.”

It quoted an unnamed “senior American official,” complaining about things heading for a military solution, “just not our(s),” he said.

Kerry has “very little leverage” in talks with Russia to resolve things, The Times groused - at the same time admitting CIA operatives use supply lines into Syria “to arm (so-called) rebel groups,” failing to identify them as ISIS and other terrorist groups.

No moderate ones exist, another of the many Big Lies during nearly five years of conflict. 

The Times dismissively called Russia’s real war on terror a “military adventure” - often referring to US wars of aggression as liberating ones.

On Tuesday during testimony before Senate Armed Services Committee members, National Intelligence director James Clapper lied - calling Putin “the first leader since Stalin to expand Russia’s territory.”

Hillary Clinton earlier compared him to Hitler, the pejorative used against other leaders not playing by Washington rules, notably Hugo Chavez.

Clapper, other US and Western officials often accuse Russia of nonexistent “aggression,” never offering proof corroborating their baseless charges.

According to The Times, “(t)he Russians, with Iranian help on the ground, appear to be handing Mr. Assad enough key cities (to let) his government…hang on” - ignoring his courageous liberating struggle, contesting US aggression.

Again citing unnamed US officials, The Times claimed Sergey Lavrov’s strategy involves “negotiating cease-fires and slow-progressing political accords, while making inroads on the battlefield” - ignoring years of all-out Russian efforts for peace since leading up to Geneva I in mid-2012.

Times reports consistently fail to explain Obama’s war of aggression on Syria, his full responsibility raping a nonbelligerent country, turning it into a nightmarish wasteland - the strategy in all US imperial wars.

Assad enjoys overwhelming popular support. Syrians want no one else leading him. He’s intelligent, soft spoken, thoughtful, levelheaded and honest, polar opposite duplicitous US and other Western political figures. 

Don’t expect The New York Times to explain, shamelessly misportraying him as Hitlerian.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Endless US War and Occupation of Afghanistan

Endless US War and Occupation of Afghanistan

by Stephen Lendman

Four weeks post 9/11, Washington launched naked aggression on Afghanistan, a country posing it no threat. 

Planners had endless war and permanent occupation in mind - an imperial scheme planned months in advance, the 9/11 mother of all US false flags the phony pretext.

On October 28, 2007, candidate Obama lied, saying “I will promise you this, that if we have not gotten our troops out by the time I am president, it is the first thing I will do.”

He systematically violated every major promise made, continuing endless war on Afghanistan Bush began, maintaining permanent occupation - both leaders responsible for millions of deaths, vast destruction, unspeakable human misery, and a nation-state ravaged and destroyed, turned into nightmarish harshness for its people.

Whoever succeeds Obama in January 2017 will continue the same ruthless imperial agenda. America came to Afghanistan to stay, the fundamental rights of its people to live free at peace entirely ignored - longstanding US global policy at home and abroad, running roughshod over rule of law principles and democratic values.

Interviewed by the Washington Post, outgoing US-led NATO Afghan commander General John Campbell indicated escalated Pentagon involvement ahead in the war-torn country after over 14 years of endless US naked aggression, assuring more mass slaughter, destruction and endless misery for its long-suffering people.

US officials in a position to know understand the grand illusion of a long ago lost US war. Another generation or two of fighting won’t change things. Yet conflict continues despite Obama’s to end it throughout his tenure.

His successor and likely others to follow will inherit war without end. How many more millions of Afghan deaths will it take to change things? 

How much more vast destruction and intolerable human misery? Most Americans have no idea what’s ongoing in their name. 

Their ignorance and indifference let endless horrors persist - the nation’s resources squandered on imperial madness, a maniacal quest for unchallenged global dominance, raping one country after another to achieve its objective.

Campbell is a longtime warrior, the only way stars atop shoulders are gotten. “I’m not going to leave (Afghanistan) without making sure my leadership understands that there are things we need to do,” he blustered. He has lots more deaths and destruction in mind.

In December 2014, Obama declared an end to US combat operations in Afghanistan. Calling it “a milestone,” he lied saying “the longest war in American history is coming to a responsible conclusion.”

It was lawlessly irresponsible from inception, continuing seamlessly from his first day in office to his duplicitous 2014 declaration to today, with no end of US combat operations and occupation planned.

Pentagon commanders urge decades of US occupation and combat ahead, part of America’s long war, former vice president Dick Cheney earlier saying it won’t end in our lifetime.

In congressional testimony, Campbell claimed “Afghanistan has not achieved an enduring level of security and stability that justifies a reduction of our support” - code language for wanting congressional support for endless war and occupation.

In January, Obama authorized expanding America’s military footprint in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

Campbell want US commanders given more flexibility in how they conduct operations - empowering the Joint Chiefs and their field subordinates over civilian authorities if approved, putting important foreign policy decisions in their hands, making America more than ever a modern-day Sparta under these conditions.

Ending Washington’s combat role in Afghanistan on the pretext of serving only in an advisory role was always a ruse, a thinly veiled scheme for permanent war - like in Iraq, Syria and Libya.

US civilian and military officials deplore peace and stability. Endless wars take precedence, an agenda perhaps ending in mass-annihilation. Living by the sword assures perishing by it, humanity hugely at risk today.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Netanyahu Calls Arabs Predatory Animals

Netanyahu Calls Arabs Predatory Animals

by Stephen Lendman

Netanyahu heads a viciously racist state, demeaning Arabs throughout its existence. Democracy is pure fantasy, hypocrisy from inception, tyranny worse than ever now.

The current regime intends creating a greater fortress Israel than already, building more walls, encircling the country to protect it from “Arab predators,” to keep out “the beasts,” according to Netanyahu.

“(W)e will encircle the whole country with fences and barriers,” he bellowed. Maybe he has in mind building a roof over it. 

His lunatic schemes have no limit, including waging endless war on defenseless Palestinian civilians, murdering them in cold blood.

He announced his scheme while touring the Israeli/Jordanian border, along with saying he’s “formulating a plan to seal off the openings in the security fence in the West Bank,”- code language for isolating Palestinians in cantonized communities, cut off from each other, escalating occupation harshness, assuring heightened tensions.

“At the end of the day,” he blustered, “there will be a fence like this one (bordering Jordan under construction) surrounding its entirety…We will surround the entire State of Israel with a fence, a barrier.”

Building it is part of a multi-year project, including a new barrier along the Gaza border, costing billions of dollars overall, US taxpayers picking up part of the cost.

Last month, building the fence bordering Jordan began, about 30 km initially from Eilat to beyond a Timma Valley international airport under construction.

Irresponsible fence-building costing billions instead of fence-mending costing nothing, creating peace and good will, is one of many examples of outrageous Israeli policy.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Landslide New Hampshire Primary Results

Landslide New Hampshire Primary Results

by Stephen Lendman

Iowa caucuses portend little, rarely if ever determining what’s to follow. New Hampshire was the first primary.

It represents state or perhaps New England sentiment, not indicative of upcoming primary results.

Yet it’s significant enough to show Trump and Sanders’ candidacies are real, not flashes in the pan - duopoly power brokers no doubt plotting ways to turn things around for their favorites.

A long, seemingly endless, primary season remains, including so-called super-Tuesday on March 1, concluding in mid-June ahead of summer party conventions.

Republicans hold theirs from July 18 - 21, Democrats from July 25 - 28, each funded by deep-pocketed corporate interests and billionaires.

Sanders and Trump triumphed overwhelmingly in New Hampshire, swamping their rivals - Sanders over Clinton by a 60 - 38.4% margin, Trump besting 2nd place finisher John Kasich  by 35.1% to 15.9%.

Iowa winner Ted Cruz slumped to 11.5%. Jeb Bush stayed alive with 11.1%. Marco Rubio registered 10.6%. Results for all other Republican candidates showed too little support to sustain their campaigns much longer.

Next up - the Republican South Carolina primary on February 20. Democrats hold theirs separately on February 27.

Recent polls showed Trump way ahead by a nearly two-to-one margin over Ted Cruz, Clinton swamping Sanders overwhelmingly, the margin varying by individual survey.

Whether New Hampshire results change things remains to be seen. Does it matter? America’s sham money-controlled political process lacks legitimacy, a democracy in name only, too corrupted to fix.

Duopoly power brokers decide things. Proportionally representative (PR) governance is absent. America’s rigged winner-take-all system lacks credibility.

PR represents all voters from all political parties (including independents) proportionally to their electoral strength. If candidates from one party win 30% of the votes, they get 30% of legislative seats. Not in America. Here, 50.1% takes all.

The Electoral College constitutes another systemic flaw. It's fundamentally undemocratic. Bush v. Gore stands out. 

Winning a popular mandate doesn't matter - especially when five Supreme Court justices have final say, their choice overriding the electorate.

Sixteen times under Electoral College rules, winning presidential candidates got a minority of votes. Winner take all rules exclude runoffs. Popular favorites lose more times than people realize.

Most often, half the electorate opts out, wanting no part of a system not representing them. Presidents can be elected with as little as one-fourth of the popular vote or less.

Throughout US history, electoral legitimacy was sorely lacking. Today’s sophisticated technology facilitates election-rigging with electronic ease.

Corporate programmed and controlled electronic voting machines decide things, not enfranchised citizens.

Many legitimate voters are stripped from rolls, Blacks and Latinos most affected. Undercounts and overcounts are common.

Media scoundrels report none of this, suppressing what’s most important, perpetuating the fantasy of US democratic elections.

So-called super delegates are another issue, one getting no mainstream coverage. Republican and Democrat power brokers choose them separately from voter preferences.

Out of 2,380 Republican delegates, 153 (6.5) are chosen by party brokers, powerful insiders. Democrats are far worse with 795 (19.6%, including 308 elected officials) out of 4,048 delegates.

Super-delegates are free to support preferred establishment candidates, regardless of popular favorites. Democrats especially can swing things for Clinton if Sanders surprises by getting most primary delegates.

Scores of Republican super delegates could defeat Trump if his current huge lead narrows enough by convention time.

Big money-controlled politics assures corrupted results every time, voters having no say whatever. America’s political system is too dysfunctional to fix, democracy pure fantasy.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

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